Windsor, Ontario vs. Detroit, Michigan
It’s my tunnel!
Who owns the Canadian half of the tunnel?
The US Company was formed in 1929 to construct the tunnel with agreement that the Canadian half would revert to Windsor in 60 years. But in 1989, the US Company would not respond.
I was retained by Counsel Harvey Strosberg in Windsor.
For the case, the paper trail was significant. Until 1980, when Windsor gave its notice of intent to take over its half, one note to the financial statements disclosed the existence of their right. However, after notice, the US Company changed auditors and the note to the financial statement was dropped. The US company’s depreciation expense policy going back to the 1930’s was also consistent with the existence of this right. However, in the year of the change in auditors, the original fixed-asset ledger disclosed a “white-out” of information to reflect a change away from the original depreciation policy.
Much can be learned about a person’s mind when the paper trail talks. In 1990 ownership of the Canadian half of the tunnel reverted to the City Council of Windsor.